Aldershot College student Josh Francis will be joining 15 other players from Aldershot Town FC’s ‘Shot’s Academy’ as they travel to Pokhara, Nepal, this February, to compete in the ‘AAha! Rara Gold Cup’ international football tournament.
The Shots are looking forward to playing against the host team and defending champions, the Sahara Club, who won last year after defeating hot favourites Manang Marshyangdi Club 1-0 in front of an incredible crowd of 16,000.
With BBC Surrey joining the trip, wide media coverage is expected and Josh’s classmates and teachers will be following the team’s progress throughout the tournament. But whatever the result this year, the Aldershot team will also be kept busy attending several charity events in the region, and will be donating kit and equipment to local teams during their trip. They will also visit the Sahara Academy and Pokhara school as part of the cultural exchange taking place with Sakara UK – a Farnborough-based charity dedicated to alleviating poverty in the Pokhara region.
The first match of the tournament is due to take place in February and has already sold 15,000 tickets, serving as a reminder to Josh that this is a massive opportunity for me … and I am very excited to play in a different country.
Josh is currently studying for a qualification in Electrical Installation at Aldershot College, sister college to Farnborough College of Technology.